Divorce Guide

Divorce Guide


Uncontested Divorce Cases


There are instances where a divorce could be uncontested. In other words, in uncontested divorce cases the parties involved, reaches an agreement on the important issues surrounding their termination of marriage without the court making those decisions. There are some specific rules attached with an uncontested divorce that must be followed. The points elaborating those are discussed below.

Time frame

Each state has certain time frame that must be strictly followed in order for a divorce decree to be entered or issued by a court, irrespective of a divorce contested or not. For e.g. in most states, a court is not able to grant a divorce decree, even if both the parties agree to all the issues associated with the case, for a period of 120 days from the date of initial filing.

Monetary issues

The parties must fully agree to all issues pertaining to the assets and debts of the marriage, for a court to conclude that the particular case truly represents an uncontested divorce. A settlement agreement must be prepared by the parties that allocate the assets and debts between them, accumulated during their marriage. There should be no dispute to any matters relating to the property and debts if the divorce is to be uncontested.

Children

Uncontested divorce cases states that the couple must also fully agree to all the issues surrounding their children during the marriage. This includes custody, visitation and support. There should be no dispute whatsoever to these issues if a decree is to be issued in an uncontested manner in a divorce case.

Comprehensive Settlement Agreement

All the issues that arise out of the divorce case must be put into a written settlement agreement. In most cases, people look for the assistance of a qualified and experienced lawyer in developing an appropriate settlement agreement. Both the parties have to sign the settlement agreement in front of a public notary in advance of the final hearing in the case. The document can also be signed in front of a judge before signing it in front of a public notary.

Final hearing

At least one spouse must appear before the judge for the conclusion of the case, even if both the parties reach to a complete agreement and settlement of the case. The appearance by one spouse is required for the court to issue a divorce decree in an uncontested case. If the settlement agreement is not signed before the final hearing, then both the parties need to be present.

In order to permit the court the ability to obtain jurisdictional evidence, one or both the spouses must be present at the final hearing. This includes the testimony pertaining to the residency of the couple, the fact that the couple is incompatible and that the couple has reached a complete settlement of all the issues surrounding the termination of their marriage.

In short, if a couple wants to contest an uncontested divorce case then they should agree to all the relevant and important issues that come up during the course of their divorce proceedings.


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